ANKARA, TURKEY – An ambassador to Turkey from Russia was assassinated on camera today as he spoke at an art exhibit.
Russian envoy Andrey Karlov was shot dead by a man reported by Turkish news to be 22-year-old riot police officer Mevlut Mert Altintas. Video footage appeared to show Altintas fire shots into Karlov’s back as he spoke at an art exhibit. Altintas then yelled “Do not forget Aleppo! Do not forget Syria! Allah Akbar!”
Reports say that Altintas injured others in the incident before he was “neutralized”.
The United States condemned the assassination today. Secretary of State Jhn Kerry said “Our thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones, the Russian people, and with the other victims who were injured in this shooting.
“We stand ready to offer assistance to Russia and Turkey as they investigate this despicable attack, which was also an assault on the right of all diplomats to safely and securely advance and represent their nations around the world.”
CNN reports that the assassination come one day “before diplomats from Turkey, Iran and Russia are scheduled to meet in Moscow to discuss the situation in the besieged Syrian city of Aleppo” where a human tragedy has unfolded during the on-going Syrian civil war, in which Russia has been heavily involved.